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Via Alpina Youth – walking the change

Feb 15, 2023
The Via Alpina long-distance-trail has been connecting all of the Alpine countries for over 20 years now. The project “Via Alpina Youth – walking the change” spreads knowledge, ideas and opportunities on sustainable lifestyles, inclusion, environmental protection and climate change along the trail.
Image caption:
© Sophia Niederkofler

Accessibility and social justice are key challenges for mountain and outdoor enthusiasts in the Alps. Together with its partner organisations, CIPRA International is taking up these issues in three international meetings, exchanging knowledge and looking for ways to promote inclusion and diversity. Young people from different social backgrounds, with and without impairments, can get to know the Via Alpina – on hikes, outdoor overnights and excursions to visit good examples of sustainability along the trail. They address topics such as wild camping, environmental protection or climate change. The project is funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union.

Project goals

  1. Raise visibility of the Via Alpina and sustainable initiatives along its path.
  2. Young people are given the opportunity to discover places and initiatives for sustainable development (“Utopias”) along the Via Alpina.
  3. The Via Alpina becomes more accessible and inclusive for all population groups.
  4. Shared values and the engagement of civil society in the Alps are promoted through cross-border cultural exchanges along the Via Alpina.
  5. Young people are made aware of environmental protection in the Alpine Space.
  6. The project promotes carbon-neutral travel in order to limit the climate crisis.

“Via Alpina Youth” raises awareness of Alpine-wide relevant issues such as wild camping, health or youth participation.


  • Three international base camps: Trieste/I (summer 2023), Switzerland (summer 2024) and France (summer 2025)
  • Two “Yes, we Camp” walking weekends in France and Germany
  • Visit Utopias: six portraits in the form of short videos, podcasts and posters about inspiring initiatives and people who live sustainability
  • Workshops for project partners on communication and youth work
  • Job shadowing

Duration: from 1.1.2023 to 31.12.2025

Project partners: CIPRA International, CIPRA Germany, CIPRA France, CIPRA Italy, CIPRA Slovenia, CIPRA South Tyrol, CIPRA Switzerland, En passant par la Montagne/F, Wild Routes/I, Aurelia e.V.

Project language: English


  • This project is funded by the Erasmus+ program of the European Union.
  • This project is financially supported by Movetia. Movetia promotes exchange, mobility and cooperation in education, training and youth work - in Switzerland, in Europe and worldwide.

First hiking camp in Trieste/I


Manon Wallenberger
CIPRA International


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